Free-agent OF Floyd agrees to one-year deal with Rays
The Tampa Bay Rays have agreed to a one-year deal with free-agent outfielder Cliff Floyd, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports. The deal is for $3 million, plus $2 million in performance incentives and includes an option for 2008 earnings.The Rays have been looking for a bat in right field since sending Delmon Young to Minnesota two weeks ago in a multiplayer trade that brought pitcher Matt Garza to Tampa. Floyd, 35, is a .279 hitter with 222 career home runs in 15 seasons with Montreal, Florida, Boston, the New York Mets and Chicago Cubs. Last year he hit .284 with nine homers in 108 games for the Cubs. Floyd has had numerous injury problems, and the agreement wouldn't be completed until he passed a physical. The Rays expect Floyd to log at-bats at designated hitter against right-handed pitching and share time in right field with Jonny Gomes in 2008. Rocco Baldelli could also be in the mix if he's healthy. While a Gomes-Floyd right field platoon would be subpar defensively, the two players might compensate with their combined production. Gomes has a career .932 on base-slugging percentage against left-handed pitching, while Floyd has an OBP of .859 vs. right-handers.
The Tampa Bay lineup already made significant strides last season, scoring 782 runs compared to 689 in 2006. First baseman Carlos Pena ranked second in the American League to the Yankees' Alex Rodriguez with 46 home runs.Information from ESPN.com MLB writer Jerry Crasnick contributed to this report.
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